Sep 202017
 

Mac’s tip of the week

Although we are still getting chilly evenings, we are also (at last!) getting a taste of Spring during the days. As the chance of further frosts is now minimal, it is now time to clean up any damaged foliage in readiness for new growth. It’s also a great time to feed and tip prune your citrus, checking on wasp gall while you’re at it. Enjoy the rays of sunshine as you get your hands dirty.

There is now an edible food garden at Eltham railway station!

34(!) newsletter readers turned up to help install the two wicking beds at Eltham railway station on Sunday. Here’s the roll call: Alan, Andrew, Bev, Bruce, Charlie, Chris, Constance, Dana, David, David, Felicity, Glenn, Greg, Guy, Heath, Imogen, Jamie, Jane, Jeff, Jenny, Kate, Kilian, Mac, Martin, Maryrose, Natalie, Owen, Pam, Paul, Paul, Peter, Rachael, Susan and Vera. Thanks, everyone, it was a great team effort.

Particular thanks are due to: Paul Gale-Baker, from Macleod Organic Community Garden and Paul Morland, from Bellfield Community Garden, who jointly led the work; Bev and Dana, who did much of the organising; Felicity Gordon, who has done some brilliant artwork; and Charlie the Stationmaster and his colleagues, who were most hospitable.

Here are a few pictures. There are a lot more pictures, particularly of the work as it progressed, on the newly created Eltham Railway Station page.

We’ll now catch our breath and then start planning our next steps. To keep in touch with developments, join the Facebook group, Incredible Edible Eltham?

Community gardens in Manningham

Another week, another set of community gardens. This time it’s the gardens in Manningham. Each of the 3 gardens now has its own page on our website (Doncaster Hill, Kevin Heinze GROW and Warrandyte) and have also been included on the map of where the community gardens are. Another way of viewing the material is via the community gardening section of the Local Food Directory. Thanks to the community gardens for responding to my requests for information and photos. And thanks to Nigel Philpot from the Council for pointing me in the right directions.

Doncaster Hill Kevin Heinze GROW Warrandyte

Situations vacant (farmers’ market helpers)!

Local Food Connect is seeking helpers for the Eltham Farmers’ Market. The work is paid. Applicants need to be both reliable and fit as there is some heavy lifting required. The work will suit those with a restrained approach to Saturday night as the starting time is 6.15am Sunday morning. The time involved could vary but someone is needed before and after the market. There may also be an opportunity to work on a stall in-between. For more information, call Chris (0407 431366).

Local food producer news

Carlton Farmers’ Market has closed, at least for the time being.

The 2017 Official Great Aussie Pie Competition has just been held and there were some winners from North East Melbourne. One Girl Pie, from Richmond, won a gold and three silvers for their gourmet pies. Blue Pear Pantry, from North Warrandyte, and My Little Country Kitchen, from Kinglake West, both won silvers for their gourmet sausage rolls.

Some interesting links

Libby Shaw, from Nature’s Harvest Hurstbridge, has blogged about herbal medicines for digestive complaints.

Here is a thoughtful article entitled The Food Hub Dilemma (or what we mean when we say we support local farmers). Thanks to Permablitz Melbourne for pointing out the link.

Which link was clicked most times in last week’s newsletter?

Indira Naidoo’s top five plants for indoor living.

Crowdfunding for Melbourne ‘farmwalls’

Farmwall want to build vertical, edible farmwalls that use a closed-loop, natural approach to grow and store produce inside cafes and restaurants in Melbourne. They are currently crowdfunding for their first three restaurants.

Joke of the week

Submitted by Rita Hodgson: Why was the scarecrow given a medal? Because he was outstanding in his field.

Read all the jokes.

New events

‘Veggies, flowers & bees’ Spring veggie garden workshop

What: Keep the kids entertained with this fun, hands-on workshop. Kids will make their own vegetable and flower garden to take home. They will also learn about the importance of bees in the garden and meet a local beekeeper. All materials provided. Suitable for primary school aged children. Note that a parent or guardian must be present at the workshop.
When: Tuesday, 3rd October, 10-11am.
Where: Rivers of Yarrambat.
Cost: $27.
Bookings: Eventbrite.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

‘Meet the beekeeper’ An introduction to bees workshop

What: Resident beekeeper Nathan Stewart, from Maya’Xala Honey, will take kids on an adventure to explore inside the hive. In this interactive and hands-on learning class, Nathan will teach kids more about these fascinating and crucial invertebrates as well as teach them about the amazing superfood they make: honey. The session will touch on: extracting and tasting different honey and honeycomb; the roles of a queen, drone and worker bee; looking at bees under a microscope; how to find the queen bee amongst thousands of worker bees; and learning to appreciate the foods that would not exist without bees and pollination. Each child will take home a temporary bee tattoo and a bee helium balloon. Ideally suited to kids aged 5-9 years old.
When: Tuesday, 3rd October, 11.30am-12.30pm.
Where: Rivers of Yarrambat.
Cost: $32.
Bookings: Eventbrite.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

‘Buzz inn’ native bee workshop

What: Katrina Forstner, founder of Buzz and Dig, is a local gardener, native bee enthusiast and maker of insect hotels.
Native bees are good friends in the garden, performing the valuable service of pollination. Learn about solitary native bees, and the advantages of attracting these to your garden, as well as how to make bee hotels. After the workshop, take a tour of Northcote Library Food Garden with members, and see for yourself how easy it is to create a bee-friendly garden using edibles and natives.
When: Sunday, 8th October, 10.30am-midday.
Where: Northcote Library Food Garden.
Cost: free.
Bookings: Eventbrite.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Making permaculture stronger

What: Dan Palmer and friends will introducing the www.MakingPermacultureStronger.net project and summarise where it’s been, where it is, and where it’s going.
When: Sunday, 8th October, 1-2pm.
Where: Brunswick.
Cost: free.
Bookings: Very Edible Gardens website.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Permaculture design

What: Put on the permaculture goggles and use them to see the potential and make the most out of any space. You will go through the process of permaculture design as developed by VEGs. Presented by Adam Grubb.
When: Wednesday, 11th October, 6-8pm.
Where: Brunswick.
Cost: free.
Bookings: Very Edible Gardens website.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Cooking master class

What: Enjoy 3 tasting size courses cooked by chef Bek McMillan, from Gourmet Living, who will demonstrate step by step. All recipes are included. Menu: sambal battered zucchini; chicken satay; and chocolate mousse.
When: Friday, 13th October, 7-9pm.
Where: Templestowe.
Cost: $42.
Bookings: Eventbrite.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Open Cellars of the Artisan Hills

What: Visit any or all of the family-owned wineries in Nillumbik, each with an individual style, where the grapes are hand-picked and hand-crushed by family and friends in the traditional style, with wines developed on site. This is a chance to sample exquisite wines from the artisan wine-makers of the western Yarra Valley, at wineries not always open to the public. You will also find excellent food to complement the wine, as well as live music and artworks from local artists at some venues. There is no entry fee, or tasting fee, at any of the venues. The 17 wineries participating in October 2017 are: Buttermans Track, Easthill Estate, Giammarino Wines, Hildebrand Ridge Organic Vineyard, Kings of Kangaroo Ground, Massaros, Naked Range Wines, Nillumbik Estate, Panton Hill Vineyard & Winery, Philip Lobley Wines, Punch, Shaws Road Winery, Stockman Wines, Swipers Gully Vineyard, Watson’s Creek Wines, Wedgetail Estate and Yarrambat Estate Vineyard.
When: Saturday, 14th October and Sunday, 15th October, both 11am-5pm.
Where: various around Nillumbik.
Cost: free.
Bookings: just turn up.
Further information: their website.

Practically Green Festival

What: The festival celebrates sustainable living and all things green. It will include: practical demonstrations and workshops; sustainable building and lifestyle exhibitors; market stalls; live music; children’s activities and entertainment; Edendale nursery and gardens; local food and wine; not-for-profit and community groups; and a sustainability art project. The workshops will include: 11.30am – Talking food forests; midday – Sustainable Table towards a zero-waste lifestyle; 1pm – Setting up a worm farm; 2pm – Love food, hate waste; and 3pm – Fermenting food.
When: Sunday, 15th October, 10am-4.30pm.
Where: Edendale.
Cost: free.
Bookings: just turn up.
Further information: their website.

Organic backyard veggie production and plant basics

What: Growing your own food is a rich and rewarding part of life, and most of us want to do it chemical free. But where to get started? This talk, by VEG’s Jeremy Prentice, will cover how take those very first steps: understanding plant biology and propagation, waterwise gardening, companion planting, natural pest control, composting, worms and soil.
When: Wednesday, 18th October, 6-8pm.
Where: Brunswick.
Cost: free.
Bookings: Very Edible Gardens website.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

The power of chook

What: Home chicken husbandry is making a global resurgence as people see the benefit of cheaper eggs, greater soil fertility and, yes, the companionship which comes from having these vivacious ladies around the garden. Learn what you need to get started, how to care for chickens and how to integrate them into highly productive backyard food systems for mutual benefits for your chickens and plants. Topics include housing, good chook health, what to feed, the social life of chooks, and how to avoid odours while building great soil.
When: Wednesday, 25th October, 6-8pm.
Where: Brunswick.
Cost: free.
Bookings: Very Edible Gardens website.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Cooking from the garden – making filled pasta

What: Learn how to make your own pasta using all natural ingredients. Learn how to transform this into delicious filled shapes, such as cannelloni and ravioli, that you will all enjoy together at the end.
When: Thursday, 26th October, 10am-midday.
Where: Whittlesea Community Garden.
Cost: free.
Bookings: contact Megan by phone (9716 3361) or email.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Growing fruit and veg in small containers

What: Growing food without access to ground soil is very possible. With a variety of containers, pots, raised beds, vertical planters available on the market, knowing which are best for growing food and for your situation can really accelerate your successes. You will cover suitable containers, potting mixes, feeding regimes, watering and how to make the most of your spaces.
When: Wednesday, 1st November, 6-8pm.
Where: Brunswick.
Cost: free.
Bookings: Very Edible Gardens website.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Fermentation

What: Join Carolina Cordeiro for a talk about preserving garden produce with fermentation. This talk will continue into a paid workshop (see below)..
When: Saturday, 4th November, 11am-midday.
Where: Brunswick.
Cost: free.
Bookings: Very Edible Gardens website.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Fermentation to make the seasons last longer

What: Join Carolina Cordeiro to learn about stretching out the seasons by preserving your garden produce. Carolina will focus on how to partner with millions of tiny microbes to ferment your way towards enjoying garden produce the year around. Bring a jar to take home your very own home-made sauerkraut and (possibly) kimchi..
When: Saturday, 4th November, 11am-2pm.
Where: Brunswick.
Cost: $45.
Bookings: Very Edible Gardens website.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Whittlesea Show

What: With over 50,000 visitors over the weekend, it is one of Victoria’s largest agricultural shows. There will be lots of free activities and entertainment throughout the weekend, including: cattle and sheep on show; horse show; showjumping; livestock pavilion; animal nursery; wood chopping; vintage displays; arts & craft competition; photography competition; and alpacas & alpaca handler competitions. No dogs or alcohol allowed.
When: Saturday, 4th November and Sunday, 5th November, both 9am-5pm.
Where: Whittlesea Showgrounds.
Cost: $20.
Bookings: just turn up.
Further information: their website.

Vertical vegetable gardening

What: Vertical gardening is perfect for people in high rise apartments, or on small blocks with limited garden space. This session will focus on growing vegetables and other edibles in a vertical gardens. Considerations to be covered include light access, weight and water, as well as the different vertical garden systems from low to high tech. Find out what kinds of edibles work well in the vertical garden and how to maximise their production and keep them looking good.
When: Wednesday, 15th November, 6.30-7.30pm.
Where: Box Hill Library.
Cost: free.
Bookings: their website.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Love food, hate waste cooking demo with dinner

What: Did you know Victorians waste 25% of the food they buy? Learn how to avoid food waste and use leftovers more creatively. Local chef Duang Tengtrirat, from Real Food Catering, will provide a cooking demonstration where you can gain fresh new ideas on how to use all of the food you buy. You will learn how to use all of the vegetable and how to be creative with leftovers. Plus you get to eat the food as well.
When: Wednesday, 15th November, 6.30-8.30pm.
Where: Edendale.
Cost: free.
Bookings: Trybooking.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Introduction to permaculture (two sessions)

What: Facilitator: Donna Livermore. Developed by Bill Mollison and David Holmgren, permaculture (permanent agriculture) is a whole system approach to ecological planning and design for sustainable living. This workshop, spread over two weekends, will be beneficial to both those new to the concept of permaculture and for those thinking of undertaking a permaculture design course. You will be introduced to permaculture and gain a basic understanding of the principles and design methods associated with permaculture.
When: Wednesday, 15th November and Saturday, 25th November, both 10am-4pm.
Where: Edendale.
Cost: $120.
Bookings / Further information: Trybooking.

The art of espalier

What: What you will learn: growing espaliered fruit trees; different techniques to make the most of all available space for espalier; and improve your general gardening skills. “Go vertical” is the cry when garden space is limited. Gardening in two dimensions is what espalier is about and this class will cover the different types and how to get them started and then continue to train them into the desired shape. Topics covered are suitable fruit trees, pruning and training techniques. Presented by Diana Cotter.
When: Thursday, 16th November, 6.30-9pm.
Where: Bulleen Art & Garden.
Cost: $45.
Bookings / Further information: WeTeachMe.

Summary of upcoming events

Over the next week
Over the next month

View the complete calendar of upcoming events.

 Leave a Reply

(required)

(required)